Saturday, February 23, 2013

Do you moderate your comments?

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As my never ending endeavor to continue to be a contributor and producer in the #etmooc community and a better blogger in general, I am still spending time reviewing blogs and trying to leave thoughtful comments. I learn so much from watching comments and thread's take off that I love being able to get feed's and emails from blogs I have commented on previously.

I am noticing a new trend, I did not see a few years ago and I find it so odd as we are in the age of "digital identity" and citizenship.

Many people let my comments fly and do not moderate their comments. I have to admit I am usually quite shocked when this happens. So I have to ask. Why would you allow someone to comment to your blog or any "uploaded" work" without moderating their work first. The comment could be horrible, or in my case I get a lot of advertisements which I assume are spam and delete them immediately. I certainly do not allow a comment to hit the www were all can see, if I have no idea what it says or if it represents me and who I am trying to relate/connect with.

I used to have my middle school students read the following PDF. "This is Me". It really relates to how we are perceived on line. So for those of you who don't moderate or are not sure where the setting is, please give a shout. Don't let other's comment's help define who you are online.


  1. Spam comments are a real issue. I wouldn't want them connected to me. I agree it is important to moderate.

    1. Thanks Sue, I think it is really important for students especially, who knows what one will say or post online when full of hormones. Swearing and the like would be aweful and I have tried to explain that repeated when I teach blogging to any group and yes, I am seeing alot of stuff that are "let us advertise your blog" or posts from "anonomous" from oversees that do not translate in google. I fear I may be clicking too much!

  2. Hi Sherry

    There are differing opinions on moderating comments.

    On an educator's personal blog the reason why they might not moderate comments are:
    1. Comment moderation interrupts the flow of the conversations. It prevents you from seeing the instantaneously responses of others and slows down the conversation.
    2. Comment moderation confuses some commenters and can discourage them from commenting. It makes them think their comment hasn't been submitted or that the blogger doesn't like comments.

    The other aspect you might not be aware of is the default comment setting on all newly created blogs on Edublogs and WordPress is "Comment author must have a previously approved comment". This means the first new comment by a new commenter is always moderated and any subsequent comment is automatically published. This may be why you are assuming they aren't moderating comments. With this type of moderation setting they are balancing preventing inappropriate comments from comment spammers that get past Akismet while allowing those they trust to publish comments without moderating. Personally I think this is the better approach on a personal blog if it is preventing spam commenters because it allows other readers to reflect on the comments others are adding without the delay of waiting for the blogger to approve.

    You also need to take into account the amount of spam comments you are dealing with. Both Edublogs and WordPress use Akismet. All comments are automatically checked against the Akismet server. Any comments that it recognizes as spam it automatically marks as spam and the blogger never sees (unless they check their spam folder). Akismet learns very quickly from what users are marking as spam so it very good at stopping most spam comments. You'll probably find that spam comments is a bigger issue on Blogger than a a blog that has Akismet.

    Student blogs are a totally different situation. If inappropriate comments are a concern then the comments should be moderated, and if the students are young, the comments should be checked by the teacher before the students ever see them. On Edublogs we have it set up so that a teacher can choose to have all comments on all student blogs moderated and they can see the comments waiting moderation in My Class > Student Blogs. Students can't see the comments in their student blog dashboard until the comment is approved by the teacher.


    1. Sue, as always thanks so much for your comment. I quess I should switch to wordpress. Thank you so much for letting me know about the "moderate the first" or those setting that allow moderation to appear seemless". Maybe I should switch to wordpress. It appears they have some cool features in comparison to blogspot. I used to love edublogs and I am so glad you are a part of this etmooc. I used it years ago and was greatful I could give parents so many resources as to why they could allow their children to blog and even then oh, 2009, it made me feel better to know I could control any issues and mostly avoid "cyberbullying" that is common when we let some of middle and highschool students on line. Great comment that has educated me. Thank you!

  3. Sherri: Thanks so much for sharing. I especially like the resources for students This is Me. Lots to think about!

    1. It really is a great resource at any age level. Thanks so much for reading and commenting.